Improving the recruitment game

by 07 Aug 2007

AS A growing number of companies struggle with skills shortages, HR professionals need to work more closely with recruiters so they can sell opportunities more effectively and put forward more attractive value propositions to talented candidates, according to a visiting recruitment expert from the UK.

The first step is for recruiters to ask better questions of their clients to engage them in a partnership relationship so the recruiter is able to create a recruitment plan for each vacancy.

In return, HR professionals and line managers should put aside stereotypes about recruiters and give them more time in providing information that will assist them in securing the best candidates.

“A client will often say: ‘Here are the duties, the tasks and the salary, here’s a brochure about our organisation. Go find the person; don’t ask me any questions because I don’t have any time for that,’” said Mike Walmsley, chairman of Recruitment Training Productions.

HR professionals and line managers unwittingly tied the hands of recruiters and potentially cut off a supply of good candidates for their organisation by tarring all recruiters with the same brush and being unwilling to work more proactively with them, he said.

Speaking at a recent Recruitment and Consulting Services Association seminar, Walmsley said that this kind of thinking would get HR professionals and line managers to help share knowledge that would give recruiters a competitive advantage in attracting talented candidates and present their organisation in a more positive light.

“Clients need to think about questions like: What are we doing better than our competitors, or what are they doing better than us? How can we counteract the things that they’re doing better? What new products and services are we bringing to the market in the next six months that will give us a competitive edge? Why would a happily employed person want to work for us rather than one of our competitors?” Walmsley said.

It was important that recruiters work with clients in coming up with a recruitment plan, looking at where they would find a potential candidate, what kind of companies they could be working for, what other job titles they could hold in other organisations and potential candidates in other organisations that could be headhunted for the position.

“Recruiters then need to drill down into the selling benefits of the job,” he said.

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